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The Big "Are My Grades Good Enough for Cambridge?" Thread (Mk1)

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    If you get the 3 grades required for entry/exceed the requirements, but have extra A levels that aren't as good or are unrelated to the course, will I still have a chance?
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    ok so just got back my AS results- AAAA and honestly im over the moon, never expected anything like that considering i was predicted straight B's.

    Cambridge was never really an option for me due to my gcse's A*AAAABBBBB and i realise that most candidates will be applying with straight A*s.

    So, how lenient are they on GCSE's? you hear all the stories about how they're not as strict as oxford, but is there really any truth in that?

    thanks
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    All you can do is apply. If you've shown improvement from GCSEs to AS levels that's a good sign and will reflect well on you, so it's a good start. Then there are all the other parts of the application - your personal statement, reference, supplementary application questionnaire - which will go together and be considered as a whole. So they may decide that these are more important than your GCSEs, or they may not - but you won't know until you apply, and as long as you choose 4 other sensible choices I'd say you might as well have a go You'll need to make sure at least 1 of your AS levels has marks high enough that it can be turned into an A* next year.
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    So do they look at the required 3 A levels, or all 4/5? Anyone?
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    Need some reassesment on my situation! Applying for Maths possibly, and need some opinions.

    GCSEs: 5A*s 4As
    AS: Maths 300/300, Further Maths 295/300, Physics 289/300, Econ 189/200
    Predicted 4A*s.

    With a half decent personal statement and a good reference, where do I stand? My greatest worry is my GCSEs, as well as the interview I guess.
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    95% of these questions are answered by the Cambridge website here:-
    http://www.study.cam.ac.uk/undergrad.../thefacts.html
    'UMS performance
    We ask applicants to tell us the details of their uniform mark scheme (UMS) performance in every AS/A2 Level unit taken to date on our Supplementary Application Questionnaire. Our research shows that performance at AS/A Level as measured by average UMS percentages is a much better predictor of degree potential than GCSE results.

    Our main measure of UMS performance is the average across three subjects: for Arts and Social Science applicants across the three best subjects (excluding General Studies and Critical Thinking); for Science applicants across the three most relevant subjects.

    In the last admissions round the average Cambridge applicant scored about 90% on this measure, while the average successful Cambridge applicant scored nearer 95%. Note that both these figures are averages. There were successful Cambridge applicants who had UMS averages in their best/most relevant three subjects below 90%.'

    So now you have your AS results, selection of the relevant 3 subjects and a quick bit of maths to calculate the relevant average should indicate where you sit in relation to average applicants and average successful applicants.
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    OK, I got my AS Results back today:

    Maths/Further Maths (Edexcel):
    C1 - 99/100
    C2 - 100/100
    FP1 - 100/100
    S1 - 95/100
    D1 - 96/100
    D2 - 94/100

    Physics (OCR B):
    G491 - 79/90
    G492 - 150/150
    G493 - 58/60

    Applied Business (Edexcel):
    Unit 1 - 59/100
    Unit 2 - 96/100
    Unit 3 - 100/100

    As a Maths applicant, this gives me a UMS percentage of over 95% across the three most relevant subjects. However, would the D in Unit 1 of Applied Business be liable to hinder my application in any way? I'm not sure whether to go for a remark, even though the Applied Business AS is still an A thanks to the 2 units of coursework.
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    If I'm applying for chemical engineering via natural sciences and I'm doing Maths f.Maths physics and chemistry. Which are the three most relevant subjects?
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    (Original post by Groat)
    They'll count all the Maths as one, so you really only have three subjects. :yes:
    Thank god for that. I got 85% in the final two modules of chemistry and physics. Will that have a big impact? I averaged 95% overall. Stress levels at maximum.
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    (Original post by Groat)
    95% overall? That puts you in a great position. :yes:
    Across the four subjects.
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    Hey guys,

    I have 9 A*s at GCSE and I got my AS results today:

    Maths+Further Maths: (overall 99%)
    C1- 100/100
    C2- 98/100
    C3- 100/100
    C4-98/100
    M1-99/100
    S1-98/100

    Chemistry: (overall 99%)
    CH1- 120/120
    CH2- 120/120
    CH3- 56/60

    Biology: (overall 97%)
    Bio Unit 1: 94/100
    Bio Unit 2: 138/140
    Bio Unit 3: 60/60


    Critical Thinking (Just one module, other one I do next year to get my AS qualification):
    73/100

    As you can see, the critical thinking is a low point and I'm a little bit worried about it, but I can still get an A overall next year. Will my other %s cover up for the critical thinking?

    Edit: Im thinking of applying for Medicine
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    Hi I'm not sure whether it's worth applying to Cambridge as I know there's a lot of emphasis on your UMS marks at AS, and I don't have 90% in all my units—could someone tell me if my grades are good enough? I'm probably going for Geography, or alternatively Human, Social and Political Sciences.

    IGCSE: 9A* (Maths, Biology, Chemistry, History, Geography, Spanish, Modern Greek, English Language, English Literature)

    AS:
    Maths — A (90%)
    C1: 100/100
    C2: 88/100
    S1: 81/100

    English Literature — A (88%)
    Unit 1: 96/120
    Unit 2: 80/80

    History — A (91%)
    Unit 1: 96/100
    Unit 2: 86/100

    Geography — A (96%)
    Unit 1: 140/140
    Unit 2: 51/60

    Modern Greek — A (96%)
    Unit 1: 96/100

    Please quote me if you reply. Thank you!!
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    (Original post by elenii)
    Hi I'm not sure whether it's worth applying to Cambridge as I know there's a lot of emphasis on your UMS marks at AS, and I don't have 90% in all my units—could someone tell me if my grades are good enough? I'm probably going for Geography, or alternatively Human, Social and Political Sciences.

    IGCSE: 9A* (Maths, Biology, Chemistry, History, Geography, Spanish, Modern Greek, English Language, English Literature)

    AS:
    Maths — A (90%)
    C1: 100/100
    C2: 88/100
    S1: 81/100

    English Literature — A (88%)
    Unit 1: 96/120
    Unit 2: 80/80

    History — A (91%)
    Unit 1: 96/100
    Unit 2: 86/100

    Geography — A (96%)
    Unit 1: 140/140
    Unit 2: 51/60

    Modern Greek — A (96%)
    Unit 1: 96/100

    Please quote me if you reply. Thank you!!
    Looks fine to me - they aren't expecting perfection but an overall picture of high ability, and they only average the three best for arts students, so 88% in English won't be too much of a barrier (and even then it's still a good A!) Your grades are excellent and if you want to apply, you should do so. Congratulations on the AS results!
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    (Original post by SoundDude)
    Hey guys,

    I have 9 A*s at GCSE and I got my AS results today:

    Maths+Further Maths: (overall 99%)
    C1- 100/100
    C2- 98/100
    C3- 100/100
    C4-98/100
    M1-99/100
    S1-98/100

    Chemistry: (overall 99%)
    CH1- 120/120
    CH2- 120/120
    CH3- 56/60

    Biology: (overall 97%)
    Bio Unit 1: 94/100
    Bio Unit 2: 138/140
    Bio Unit 3: 60/60


    Critical Thinking (Just one module, other one I do next year to get my AS qualification):
    73/100

    As you can see, the critical thinking is a low point and I'm a little bit worried about it, but I can still get an A overall next year. Will my other %s cover up for the critical thinking?

    Edit: Im thinking of applying for Medicine
    Critical Thinking will almost certainly be ignored completely as they don't really consider it as a good predictor of degree performance - you've done really well and you should be able to make a strong application.
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    Hi everyone - I got my AS results today and wanted to ask a few questions regarding whether I should even attempt to apply.

    I got AABB, (As in Psychology and Business Studies, Bs in History and French). However, I am just 8 UMS away from A in History and just 5 UMS away from A in French. I hope to boost these grades up to As in Jan

    The thing is, I have very average GCSEs - largely As and Bs, with a couple of Cs. However, if it makes any difference, I went to one of the 200 most underachieving schools in the country, where noone has been to Oxbridge, or any Russell Group University at all for a long time.

    I want to apply for languages, but should I even attempt Cambridge? I am confident of at least an A*A*AA prediction for A2 (following resits in the B subjects). I also self teach Russian and Polish, and could possibly take GCSE's in the subjects too (hopefully bumping up my GCSEs a bit). I am heavily involved in language environments too.

    I don't want to embarass myself - so after having read all this - should I bother?
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    Hi everyone - I got my AS results today and wanted to ask a few questions regarding whether I should even attempt to apply.

    I got AABB, (As in Psychology and Business Studies, Bs in History and French). However, I am just 8 UMS away from A in History and just 5 UMS away from A in French. I hope to boost these grades up to As in Jan

    The thing is, I have very average GCSEs - largely As and Bs, with a couple of Cs. However, if it makes any difference, I went to one of the 200 most underachieving schools in the country, where noone has been to Oxbridge, or any Russell Group University at all for a long time.

    I want to apply for languages, but should I even attempt Cambridge? I am confident of at least an A*A*AA prediction for A2 (following resits in the B subjects). I also self teach Russian and Polish, and could possibly take GCSE's in the subjects too (hopefully bumping up my GCSEs a bit). I am heavily involved in language environments too.

    I don't want to embarass myself - so after having read all this - should I bother?
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    (Original post by Message)
    Hi everyone - I got my AS results today and wanted to ask a few questions regarding whether I should even attempt to apply.

    I got AABB, (As in Psychology and Business Studies, Bs in History and French). However, I am just 8 UMS away from A in History and just 5 UMS away from A in French. I hope to boost these grades up to As in Jan

    The thing is, I have very average GCSEs - largely As and Bs, with a couple of Cs. However, if it makes any difference, I went to one of the 200 most underachieving schools in the country, where noone has been to Oxbridge, or any Russell Group University at all for a long time.

    I want to apply for languages, but should I even attempt Cambridge? I am confident of at least an A*A*AA prediction for A2 (following resits in the B subjects). I also self teach Russian and Polish, and could possibly take GCSE's in the subjects too (hopefully bumping up my GCSEs a bit). I am heavily involved in language environments too.

    I don't want to embarass myself - so after having read all this - should I bother?
    I don't think there is any harm in applying. Grades are important, I'm not going to deny that, but Cambridge will take into account your social circumstances (the poor school) and they also place a lot of weight on the interview. If you perform well at interview, it is not unknown for people with very bad (relatively) GCSE/AS results to get an offer.
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    http://www.study.cam.ac.uk/undergrad...quirements.pdf
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    At the end of the day, if you feel like you want to go to Cambridge, you won't embarrass yourself if you apply and don't get in. I would much rather try to get in and fail doing so than never apply at all. Cambridge is just one option out of 5 on your UCAS application and you don't have terrible grades. It also depends on what you're predicted by your teachers. I know a girl who got in to Cambridge with fairly poor AS grades, but she did well at interview which balanced it out. I'd say go for it. Seriously, don't feel embarrassed or anything like that. It's worth the risk Also, I would recommend speaking to your Sixth Form/College tutors about it who will be able to give you more detailed advice, or even admissions tutors at specific colleges. Certainly at my college anyway, the admissions office does take into account your school and background and other circumstances which may affect your application (at least for medicine anyways.) Best of luck!

    (Original post by Message)
    Hi everyone - I got my AS results today and wanted to ask a few questions regarding whether I should even attempt to apply.

    I got AABB, (As in Psychology and Business Studies, Bs in History and French). However, I am just 8 UMS away from A in History and just 5 UMS away from A in French. I hope to boost these grades up to As in Jan

    The thing is, I have very average GCSEs - largely As and Bs, with a couple of Cs. However, if it makes any difference, I went to one of the 200 most underachieving schools in the country, where noone has been to Oxbridge, or any Russell Group University at all for a long time.

    I want to apply for languages, but should I even attempt Cambridge? I am confident of at least an A*A*AA prediction for A2 (following resits in the B subjects). I also self teach Russian and Polish, and could possibly take GCSE's in the subjects too (hopefully bumping up my GCSEs a bit). I am heavily involved in language environments too.

    I don't want to embarass myself - so after having read all this - should I bother?
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    My results are:

    9 IGCSEs - 5 A* (Maths; Physics, Chemistry, Biology (double award); First Language English; Geography), 2 A (ICT; Travel and Tourism), 2 high B (Business Studies; First Language Spanish)

    International AS Level - 5 A (Maths, Chemistry, Physics, Psychology, English Language)

    International A Level - all predicted A/A* (Maths, Physics, Chemistry, Psychology)

    International A Levels are not modular so I don't have UMS, just the final grade.

    Do I stand a chance applying to Cambridge for Chemical Engineering (via NatSci)?? Is there any advice you could give me to perhaps help improve my chances??
Updated: August 16, 2012
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